Written by Moms on Call || Photography by Shannon Jean Cole

We may all find ourselves stuck at home a bit more over the next few weeks.

This is a great time to bring the kids in the kitchen to help make some snacks or meals. And even though they may not be going to school, packing a lunchbox or getting a meal prepared ahead of time will save the day!

You can have a toddler step stool or allow them to mix at their toddler table. For Toddlers, all ingredients are pea-sized and mashable.  Hint: Using frozen diced veggies is a great shortcut!

A few fun recipes: 

English Muffin Pizzas

  • English muffins
  • Marinara sauce
  • Mozzarella
  • Optional pea-sized toppings:
    • Onions
    • Red, yellow, green bell peppers
    • Mushrooms
    • Broccolini
    • Tomatoes
    • Cooked Italian Sausage – pea sized crumbled
    • Cooked Grilled Chicken – pea sized and soft

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  You can put an old plastic tablecloth on the floor (or this is another reason why some of us love having a dog…or two…or more).  Prepare the added ingredients in bowls so the kids can reach in and grab a handful for sprinkling (and we use that word loosely)! Let kids ladle the sauce onto the English Muffin and then add toppings.  Even if they do not all make it onto the tiny pizza, the dog(s) thank you!  Have baby wipes on the counter for quick hand washing.  Bake in oven at 350 till cheese melts. Eat when it passes the “mom temp test” (typically a finger inserted into the middle to make sure the sauce cooled as much as the cheese).

Quesadillas 

  • Tortillas
  • Different cheeses
  • Cooked grilled chicken
  • Cooked ground turkey/beef
  • Tomatoes
  • Mushrooms
  • Onions
  • Red, yellow, green bell peppers

Each tortilla fits onto a paper plate so beautifully.  Prepare ingredients in bowls that the kids can reach in and grab a handful for sprinkling.  Place baby wipes on the kitchen counter for easy hand wiping.  Let kids add ingredients and then you place the tortilla on the grill or skillet to cook.  If you are confident or adventurous and want to try your hand at a fold-and-toss method of tortilla cooking, please be careful that your kids are at a safe distance — Dads…we are talking to you!

Carrot Zucchini Muffins

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 large carrot grated
  • 1 cup grated zucchini
  • 1/4 cup canola oil (may replace with unsweetened applesauce)
  • 4 mashed bananas (or 3 mashed bananas and 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce)

Tip:  Have things measured out and cut up before you start!  Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease mini-muffin tins.  Have kids mix the first 4 ingredients in a large bowl.  In a separate bowl, have them beat eggs and add in the next 4 ingredients.  Mix the dry and the wet ingredients and combine well.  Drop about a tablespoon of batter into prepared muffin cups.  Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes.

Egg Muffins 

  • 6 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons milk/cream
  • 2 cups of shredded cheese
  • Cooked crumbled bacon, sausage, chicken
  • Chopped spinach (Hint: use frozen!)
  • Chopped onions, red pepper, green peppers (Hint: use frozen!)

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Grease mini-muffin tin — this is a great job for the kids!  They can take a paper towel dipped in butter or vegetable oil and rub it into the muffin cups.  Beat eggs and milk together then add remaining ingredients and pour into prepared muffin cups.  Using a mixing bowl with a spout is a game-changer!

Frozen Banana Pops

  • Popsicle sticks
  • Bananas
  • Greek yogurt (feel free to use blueberry or strawberry)
  • Assorted:
    • Mini chocolate chips
    • Sprinkles

Cut banana in half.  (Plastic knives work great for little hands, with close supervision!)  Insert popsicle stick in each half.  Dip in yogurt and place on parchment-lined cookie sheet.  Decorate with assorted toppings.  Freeze for an hour and enjoy!  Monitor toddlers closely…“NO running with your banana pop” or “Quit using that Banana Pop as a sword” may be popular phrases that result in cutting the pop into smaller pieces once it has defrosted just a bit.

Enjoy the beautiful, glorious chaos and at the very least, the dogs will be in snack heaven.